I recently returned from a trip to O’ahu to shoot over there. I had a number of areas scoped out as potential hot spots for images I wanted to capture. One of which was just up the road from here. I got to the location a couple hours before the sun set and started hearing this great rumbling and then seeing this incredible spray. I knew there was a blowhole somewhere nearby. As the waves were pounding this day, it didn’t take me long to find this area. A small inlet from the Pacific where water rushed in with the surging swells and slammed against the back wall of this heart-shaped pool only to spew out enormous amounts of water.
I knew I had to photograph this amazing landscape. I knew also that there was a good chance that if I didn’t get the shot at exactly the right time, the camera was going to get soaked and possibly destroyed. Not to mention the fact that I could easily slip into this tidepool and get smashed against the rocks and probably not survive.
The view was so incredible though, that it was worth the risk. I spent about an hour just watching how it reacted and to which swells it was reacting. I felt the ground shaking and witnessed massive sprays of water from the pool. I knew in order to capture the full heart-shaped pool, I had to have my camera hanging over the edge of the tide pool, with a super wide angle lens. I knew also that I only had a few seconds from the time the ocean receded until it pounded through the channel again.
So I set my camera manually to the aperture I wanted, the focal length, and shutter speed. I kept the lens cap on the camera so as not to get any of the residual spray on the lens before my shot. Patiently, I waited until the water came crashing through the chamber and spewed from the blowhole. Then as the water receded, I ran over to the edge, set the camera and tripod to hang over, removed the lens cap and fired away. I probably only got off about 3 shots before the ground started rumbling and I had to pull the camera and tripod away and run to higher ground.
I attempted probably two dozen times, trying to get one shot that I thought might capture what I saw. Luckily, just as the sun was starting to slip behind me, I got some with the colors of the sky just starting to change. I really love this shot and am hoping to keep one of these for my wall. To me, this is the perfect piece to call “Aloha.”